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When she was 15 – and going by the moniker ‘Dizzle Dizz’ – something happened that gave her a clear sense of direction in life. One of the best albums last year wasn’t even an album—it was what Drake called a “playlist”.

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TIERRA WHACKTierra Whack’s Whack World is worth every second of your time. When Tierra Whack’s story made its way around the world, I thought of the whole Zola saga. Whack and Wells work in different media, and Whack’s neon art-kid silliness has little in common with Wells’ gloriously tawdry realism. But both of them figured out ways to exploit social-media platforms for all they’re worth, mostly because they figured out the way those platforms can work. And both of them are getting famous in the process.

Before the Fly Lo disturbance, she was in the midst of discussing Whack World , her visionary 2018 debut. A total of just 15 minutes in length, the collection of bite-sized songs (each one exactly a minute long) abruptly concludes just as listeners begin to surrender to their slick raps and catchy hooks. Threaded together with 15 videos (inspired by Instagram’s 60-second limit on streams), the album offers a window into an idiosyncratic universe full of dark humour and cartoonish imagery.

Philly-based up-and-comer Tierra Whack has officially released the music video to her latest #WhackHistoryMonth single, Unemployed.” First premiering on Adult Swim , Whack can be seen cheffing it up in a kitchen, turning anthropomorphic potatoes into a variety of creations against their will. Directed by Cat Solen, Whack — in a hilariously dark manner, mashes potatoes, turns them into a salad, fries them up, and more.

Whack World,” released last week, packs those maximalist tendencies into bite-size packages. Inspired by the 60-second limit of an Instagram video, along with the common promotional tactic in hip-hop of posting teaser snippets of songs (many of which are never released in full), Ms. Whack made a cohesive mini-album that can also function as a comment on streaming and social media.

Whack attended The Arts Academy at Benjamin Rush for three years before finishing high school in Atlanta, Georgia 2 At Benjamin Rush, she was a vocal major, and was one of few black students in a predominately white graduating class. 2 With some difficulty, she and her friends persuaded their principal to let them perform the finale number from Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit for the school vocal showcase, 2 and Whack performed a rap verse. Later in Whack’s career, she toured with Lauryn Hill , who starred in the 1993 film.


Philadelphia’s rap queen, 24, returned to Austin after buzzing performances in March at SXSW, including a noted appearance at Cheer Up Charlies. Whack had been scheduled to take over the T-Mobile stage for 45-minutes mid-afternoon Saturday, but a late start limited her set to just over half an hour.

Whack’s discography may not be full of high-energy party songs, but when she raps over dance tracks like Mr. Cheeks’ “Lights, Camera, Action!” she certainly finds that energy. In a July 2018 Instagram post captioned “OH OKAY,” she delivers a head-nodding flow over the classic party beat while taking shots at people in her life. She brings up her father, with whom she reportedly has a strained relationship, saying, “Hope you wake up without a penis.” She also warns everyone from her sister to Frank Ocean not to test her.

Whack World is more than a radical format buster. Whack breaks the rules of convention with 60-second confessions that follow a nonlinear narrative built less on chronology than lyrical wit and abstract logic. “Ninety percent of the time, I’m being silly. But it’s like that 10 percent that’s still serious. ‘Cause life is not sweet. It’s good and it’s bad. So no matter how much good is going on, the bad is always going to creep up,” she says.

Perversely, the short format is a suitable way to be introduced to a brand new artist in the streaming world awash in a deluge of new acts. The stunt certainly helped her profile, but it’s Tierra Whack’s music which has lasted longer than the initial dopamine hit. Rather than further evidence of the degradation of the modern world, Tierra Whack is playing with new forms within it and showcasing her polymath craft at the same time. In this case, less is more leaves them wanting more.

BEGINNINGS Long before Ms. Whack announced her arrival with a stroke of pure audacity — Whack World,” an absurdist 15-minute album and accompanying music video containing 15 distinct tracks and nearly as many styles and voices — she was a quiet, insecure child with a knack for poetry.

The ultimate compliment for a Philly artist is reserved for rising superstar and born-and-raised Philadelphia rapper Tierra Whack, whose 2018 mini-album “Whack World” comes in at No. 38, three spots ahead of Beyoncé’s 2016 statement “Lemonade” and one spot behind David Bowie’s final album, 2016’s “Blackstar”.


Like a standup comedian, she finds existential weight in her silliness. Wrong-footing the audience with a call and response game of whack” and quack”, she tells us: You lost. It’s a game. Life’s a game.” During a climactic airing of Hungry Hippo, she stage-dives, becoming a blur of letters. Per that song’s lyrics, she’s not your average girl.

Is Whack’s whole thing sustainable? What can she do after Whack World? I have no idea. She already seems to have some resources behind her. Whack World couldn’t have been made without a real budget, and she’s rumored to be secretly signed to Interscope. She’s not exactly a DIY success story. And she’ll have to release something truly inspiring if she wants to keep eyes on her after releasing an opening statement as attention-grabbing as Whack World. Still, she’s already shown that she can grab that attention, and that she can make a real statement once she has it. She’s on her way. And if the road from here is uncertain, that’s just what happens whenever someone does something altogether new.

Her viral moment marked a huge turning point. Not long before that point, she describes herself as a shy child. Growing up, Whack adored Dr. Seuss, and spent as much time as she could getting lost in the world of Matilda and Barney and Friends. She grows animated when she talks about these shows. As a kid I wanted to be as close as I could to the TV, I don’t know what it was but I just gravitated towards certain things.” Cartoons are a huge part of Whack’s artistry. After years of absorbing these fantastical worlds, she’s now highly adept at creating her own. During the cover shoot, she crawls around the floor contorting her face from an unnervingly wide-eyed smile to a bitter screwface. Inspired by years of watching children’s TV and refusing to ever give it up in adulthood, Whack embodies different characters with a natural tenacity.

The songs often end abruptly, as if someone hit skip on Spotify. Sometimes they blend into the next track. Some even end abruptly in the middle of a phrase—opening a suspicion that Whack has an entire album of full songs hidden somewhere. But every single one leaves you with a sense of longing. It’s fascinating, aggravating, and genius. And, because of its brevity, Whack World invites multiple back-to-back listens without it ever getting exhausting.

2017 saw the release of Mumbo Jumbo.” It became a fan favorite, racking up 500K+ views on YouTube. Whack’s debut studio album, Whack World, arrived in May 2018. The visual album included tracks like Hungry Hippo”, Flea Market” and Fru!t Salad.” Whack World was supported by a 15 minutes film by Thibaut Duverneix and Mathieu Leger. It attracted more than 2 million views within the first 6 months. Tierra Whack is reportedly signed to Interscope Records. Since her debut, she’s toured with Lauryn Hill, 6lack and Flying Lotus. She’s worked with acts like Meek Mill , Temi Oni and Student 1.


In a time where Kanye West has tried to trim down albums to seven songs and work his hand at doing more with less, Tierra Whack does it in a way that is not only more difficult, but also executed with much more finesse. In a way you can look at Whack World as being one giant song, just with 15 chapters. Accompanied with the audio is a stunning short film that really helps emphasize just how smooth each chapter rolls into the next. It’s not just a lot of mini music videos rolled into one, either. Each scene switch is a puzzle piece helping form Tierra’s mind and vision. It all fits together to become one whole. While individually each song is great, Whack World is something that no matter how hard you try, you can’t just listen to one song. You want the whole apple — not just one bite.

Whack’s video for her album Whack World combined 15 different music video snippets — each lasting a minute long. Rising rap star Tierra Whack has released a steady stream of new music this year, including the eccentrically venomous Only Child ” and the verbose Unemployed,” which received a video today.

And with an undeniable sense of lyrical narrative woven in her quick-fire rhymes, the album’s accompanying visuals are testament to Whack’s storytelling. Each track has a video, uploaded to both Instagram – in chunks – and to Youtube as a 15-minute short film. In a world in which the primary capital is attention, Tierra found a way to twist things to her advantage, tearing up the idea of what conventionally might be called an album – a smart move from one of the brightest and most creative new minds in hip-hop.

Philly rapper Tierra Whack has continued to release a new song each week during her self-proclaimed Whack History Month ” with the release of her charming new tune, Gloria.” It follows the hard-hitting Clones ” and the lighter-treading Only Child ,” which she performed along with Hungry Hippo ” during Monday’s Jimmy Kimmel Live episode.

Tierra explains that she has Attention Deficit Disorder, a diagnosis she received from her mother. She can pack a lot into 60 seconds of music, and speaks just as rapidly in person. Her words chase and stumble into each other, often making it a challenge to keep up with what she’s saying. But as she energetically recounts growing up in Philly to a single mom of three, it’s clear that storytelling has been a part of her identity for as long as she can remember.

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